Detectives investigate whether killer policeman Wayne Couzens committed other crimes

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Detectives investigate whether killer policeman Wayne Couzens committed other crimes
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Detectives are investigating whether killer policeman Wayne Couzens is responsible for further crimes as police revealed that his vehicles had been linked to two previous allegations of indecent exposure.

The former PC, 48, was handed a whole life sentence at the Old Bailey by Lord Justice Fulford who said his “warped, selfish and brutal” offences against Sarah Everard had eroded confidence in the police.

One of the allegations of indecent exposure was just 72 hours before Couzens kidnapped, raped and murdered Sarah Everard. It was reported at a McDonalds in Swanley.

Metropolitan Police Assistant Commissioner Nick Ephgrave said the investigation into the indecent exposure had been “ongoing” at the time Couzens killed Ms Everard.

He said the Met had been referred to the police watchdog and a file sent to the Crown Prosecution Service in relation to the alleged crime itself.

The senior Met officer was quizzed on whether the two incidents provided enough information to identify Couzens as a threat to women before he killed Ms Everard.

He stressed the Kent Police investigation resulted in no further action and Couzens was never named as a suspect.

The officer went on to confirm that a claim that Couzens had watched “extreme” pornography in the past only emerged after the investigation into Ms Everard’s death.

He said: “We ask anyone in the service or any member of the public that might have any information about Couzens’ behaviour – either as an officer or member of the public – that might be relevant, please come forward.”

The judge said he had been planning for at least a month before abducting the marketing executive, 33, as she walked home from a friend’s house in Clapham, south London, on the evening of March 3.

Metropolitan Police firearms officer Couzens, who had been “hunting” for a victim, used his warrant card and handcuffs to snatch the marketing executive off the street using Covid lockdown rules to make a false arrest, the court had heard.

DCI Katherine Goodwin said in a briefing after the life sentence handed down that she was not aware of any more serious allegations but said inquiries are ongoing into whether Couzens is responsible for any other crimes.

“Thus far there is nothing of the nature or seriousness of the offences for which he has been put in prison today,” she said.

“I would like to reiterate, appeal if anyone has any information or any allegations about Wayne Couzens that they would come and speak to our team.”

The police watchdog previously said Couzens was linked to a flashing incident in 2015 and two more just days before he killed Ms Everard.

Sarah Everard (Family handout/CPS) (PA Media)
Sarah Everard (Family handout/CPS) (PA Media)

The killer had worked a 12-hour shift at the US embassy before kidnapping Ms Everard in a rented Vauxhall Crossland.

“It is most likely that he suggested to Sarah Everard that she had breached the restrictions on movement that were being enforced during that stage of the pandemic,” Lord Justice Fulford said.

Couzens drove his restrained victim 80 miles before raping his victim, strangling her to death with his police belt and burning her body.

Ms Everard, who lived in Brixton, south London, may have been alive for up to five hours before she was strangled to death, the court heard.

Couzens then burned her body in a refrigerator in an area of woodland he owned in Hoads Wood, near Ashford, before dumping the remains in a nearby pond.

Lord Justice Fulford said the case in which a serving officer abused his position was so exceptional it warranted a whole life order, meaning Couzens will never be freed.

It is the first time the sentence has been imposed for a single murder of an adult not committed in the course of a terror attack.

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